Department of Psychiatry; Systems and Psychosocial Advances Research Center
Child Psychology | Criminology | Juvenile Law | Mental and Social Health | Pediatrics | Psychiatry | Psychiatry and Psychology
OBJECTIVE: To examine the relationship between a history of childhood abuse and mental health problems in juveniles who sexually offended (JSOs) over and above general offending behavior.
METHODS: A sample of 44 JSOs incarcerated in two juvenile detention centers in the Netherlands between May 2008 and March 2014 were examined for childhood abuse history (Childhood Trauma Questionnaire-Short Form) and mental health problems (Massachusetts Youth Screening Instrument-Version 2). Furthermore, the connection between childhood abuse and mental health problems in JSOs was compared to a sample of 44 propensity score matched juveniles who offended non-sexually (non-JSOs).
RESULTS: In JSOs, sexual abuse was related to anger problems, suicidal ideation, and thought disturbance. These associations were significantly stronger in JSOs than in non-JSOs.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that the relationship between childhood abuse and both internalizing and externalizing mental health problems is of more salience for understanding sexual offending than non-sexual offending, and should, therefore, be an important focus in the assessment and treatment of JSOs.
Childhood sexual abuse, MAYSI-2, Mental health problems, Sexual offending juveniles
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DOI of Published Version
Child Adolesc Psychiatry Ment Health. 2016 Nov 1;10:45. eCollection 2016. Link to article on publisher's site
Child and adolescent psychiatry and mental health
Boonmann C, Grisso T, Guy LS, Colins OF, Mulder EA, Vahl P, Jansen LM, Doreleijers TA, Vermeiren R. (2016). Childhood traumatic experiences and mental health problems in sexually offending and non-sexually offending juveniles. Psychiatry Publications. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13034-016-0127-2. Retrieved from https://escholarship.umassmed.edu/psych_pp/780
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